The Design Museum in London will offer visitors free entry to its permanent collection from 2016 under a new UK tax refund scheme, set up to encourage museums and galleries to scrap entrance charges.
The changes will coincide with its move from its current South London location to a new home in Kensington in 2016.
“I am delighted to be offering help through the VAT [value added tax] refund scheme to ensure as many families as possible can visit at no charge at all,” said chancellor George Osborne at a visit to the new site in Kensington.
“This is all part of our long term plan to make Britain and London a great place to visit with the economic benefits that come with that.”
The Design Museum will take up residence in the Grade II listed former Commonwealth Institute off Kensington High Street. The listed building is being renovated by British designer John Pawson and will triple the amount of exhibition space available for the museum’s collections.
“When we open the doors in 2016 we will reinforce Britain’s worldwide reputation for creative leadership,” said Deyan Sudjic, director of the Design Museum.
With the new admittance policy and premises, the museum expects visitor numbers to double in its first year at the new site to 650,000.